The first day of the Sport Integrity Week is over, but the expertise shared by the participants is still echoing.
The opening ceremony was held by Franco Frattini, SIGA’s Chair, Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros, SIGA’s Global CEO and Taylor Green, SIGA’s Youth Forum Chair.
Strong messages were delivered, all reaching the whole spectre of SIGA’s partners and members: sports organisations, civil society, governments, sponsors, media and right holders, among many others.
Taylor Green, Chair, SIGA Youth Forum:
“We cannot pursue a desire to revert back to normal, evoking a sense of comfort and familiarity. New challenges demand a strengthening of integrity in sport and a reimagining of a world more just, equitable, and accessible for all”.
Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros, Global CEO, SIGA:
“Talking is not enough. You must do. Don’t be a bystander. Be an agent of change. If you have a talent, use it. If you have a better idea, show it! If you want to see Sport at the Podium, support our Sport Integrity Goals.
Franco Frattini. Chair, SIGA:
“Sport in many areas is more vulnerable than ever because it is more attractive for crime and criminals. 150 protagonists will be actors, they will be proposing real solutions & sharing the best practices”
JAVIER TEBAS FIRESIDE CHAT SUCCESS
Javier Tebas, LaLiga president, was next in line with a Keynote and a fireside chat with Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros. This last one made the headlines around the globe, as Tebas said “Real Madrid have money to buy Mbappé and Haaland”.
#SIW’s media partner ‘As’ promptly posted the story on it’s website, reaching millions of people. (read here, in Spanish).
Tebas fired against European Superleague, against Real Madrid president, Florentino Perez, and against the Spanish FA, provoking waves of shock with origin in the Sport Integrity Week 2021.
EUROPEAN SPORT MODEL VS EUROPEAN SUPER LEAGUE
The first webinar of the day was one of the most participated. The attempted breakaway league 15 European clubs tried to create involved a top-level panel moderated by sports journalist Ben Jacobs.
Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros, SIGA Global CEO:
“If we want to be serious, we have to go back in time to when the G14 started creating instability and threatening to create a breakaway league in search of more revenues that could be invested in player transfers and wages. Since the days of the G14, European Football has been confronted with this threat, a negotiation that happens every four years, with a gun in the table. In the shadows, we were confronted with a bombastic announcement of a closed competition, based on the wealthy clubs, on the detriment of the foundation of the European sports model: open competitions, financial solidarity, competitive balance. This is not the essence of football. Football is a truly democratic system”.
Giorgio Marchetti, Deputy Secretary General, UEFA:
The model football is built in Europe is an open vertical transparent system, where all levels can be reached by all clubs. The superleague is not something new. Discussions and threats have existed for more than 20 years. What all these projects have in common is the will to break free from the European model. If you put business before sport, then you try to avoid some elements that can not be taken away from sport, such as relegation, promotion or not being able to qualify for an European competition. If you don’t want to consider this type of risk, you may be tempted to create a breakaway league only for a restricted number of clubs. UEFA will never agree on that. It’s a problem of the ecosystem. For example, we can look at English Premierleague last year. It was clear who was going to win. What if there was no places for Champions League? Of course, we know changes may be needed, because nothing remains the same forever. There is a need of reforming competitions, to improve them. It is important, however, that it keeps true to the spirit”.
Paolo del Pino, President, Serie A, Italian League:
“The announcement of the European Superleague was disruptive. It was one week before our shareholdes meeting to approve the creation of a new media company. A private equity company would have invested 1.7 Bn Euros. This didn’t happen. It was dramatic! Juventus and Inter decided not to sign this project. Sporting merit is fundamental, and we have to keep in mind that a few clubs that have certain projects and others live in other dimensions. We need to put all of them in a position to compete and give more resources to our financial system”.
Claus Thompson, President, Danish League | Board of Directors & Management Board, European Leagues:
“Is there anything wrong with European football? Of course there is! When you get to the root of the problem, there is an issue with cost control and overspending. The only thing that worried me after the European Superleague announcement was what would be the reaction of the leagues. When I saw It, I wasn’t worried. Football in Europe is an omnipresent culture. My doubt is not if clubs like Juventus will want to play on Serie A. It’s rather if there will be spaces for them in all competitions? The European Superleague reaffirmed what is the heart and soul of european footbal: the domestic and international competitions based on merits. That’s what we have to protect.”
CORRUPTION, GRID, ACCOUNTABILITY AND… TOP KEYNOTES
Action oriented sessions kept the debate rhythm intense and passionate, with three more top-level panels.
SPORT’S BIG FIGHT: ANTI-CORRUPTION IN SPORT, featuring:
- Lorenzo Salazar, Deputy Prosecutor General, Court of Appeal of Naples
- Franco Frattini, Chairman, SIGA
- Juan-Antonio Salazar, Legal and Policy Officer, Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Terrorist Financing, European Commission
- Amal Al-Kuwari, Director, Department of Control & Development, Administrative Control and Transparency Authority of Qatar (ACTA)
- Ulysses Smith, President & CEO, Telos Governance
GENDER, RACE, INCLUSION AND DIVERSITY: SPORT IS FOR ALL – Read SIW2021 As Media partner story here.
- Paul Elliott, Chair, Inclusion Advisory Board, The F.A.,
- Jamil Northcutt, Vice President, Player Engagement, Major League Soccer,
- Renee Brown, Senior Executive Leader, Sports Professional & Diversity & Inclusion Advocate | Former SVP & Chief of Basketball Operations & Player Relations, WNBA
- Danielle Obe, Co-Founder & Chair, Black Swimming Association
- Karin Korb, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Consultant, Business Development Facilitator
– ACCOUNTABILITY AND SCRUTINY IN SPORT MEAN SIRVS
- Alison Giordano, Vice President, Global Sponsorships and Content Marketing, Mastercard
- David Butler, General Manager, European Rugby League
- Densign White, CEO, IMMAF
- Emanuel Medeiros, Global CEO, SIGA
- Katie Simmonds()SIGA, Global COO | Managing Director, #SIGAWomen Programme
The day was also filled with three more top Keynotes, launching each of the webinars.
- Mohammed Hanzab, Founder & Chairman, THE ICSS | Vice-chair, Civil Societ, SIGA
- Brian Lewis, Chairman, Trinidad & Tobago Olympic Committee | Chairman, Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committes (CANOC) | Standing Committee on Gender, Race, Diversity & Inclusion (SIGA)
- Keith Jones, President, Soul’Touchin Experiences
Day 2 will kick off at 9 BST, 10 CET with SIGA Youth Council: Empowering Young Leaders forum.
Register here to watch live or on demand.
Places are limited.
To reserve your place, click here.
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SIGA is the world´s largest coalition in the field of sport´s governance and integrity. Supported by more than 100 international multi-industry supporters, SIGA is an independent and neutral organisation whose mission is to bring about meaningful reforms and enhance the integrity of all sports through a set of universal standards operated by an independent and neutral body. SIGA is the only organisation to bring together sport, governments, academia, international organisations, sponsors, business, rights holders, NGOs and professional services companies, from every region in the world, around a common cause of fostering greater integrity throughout sport.
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